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Hands-on learning with Construction Plus - Mahi Ora

13 Jul 2022
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Pictured above: local Aorere College student Edward

Construction Plus – Mahi Ora Work Experience Programme is an innovative Kāinga Ora school holiday programme. It offers Auckland high school students opportunities to gain valuable (paid) work experience on civil engineering sites in their own neighbourhoods. The programme is a Kāinga Ora initiative, run through the Piritahi alliance.

Seti Afoa, from Piritahi recently spoke with local Aorere College student Edward Vitale about his April 2022 school holiday experience at a civil construction site close to home. At the end of the programme, Edward concluded that, “he would like a job in construction one day.”

Edward loved the hands-on learning of the Construction Plus - Mahi Ora Work Experience Programme. “Before we started here, I thought we were coming only to observe. I thought we were not going to get involved in the actual work, but we got to do a lot of work. It’s been great.”

Edward has good advice for young people like himself thinking about joining Construction Plus - Mahi Ora. “It’s good to get out of your comfort zone, and try new things.” Edward also thinks that some parents’ misconceptions about construction can be a barrier for students like him considering jobs in the industry, and that school leavers are missing out on real opportunities.

“There are no low jobs in construction. I learnt in a short time that there are heaps of technical skills a young person can learn at a construction site. There are a lot of jobs in construction like building, heavy machinery operators, and truck driving.” Edward hopes to return to the same Aorere site in the next school holidays to gain more work experience.